PEN America has announced the finalists for the 2022 PEN America Literary Awards. The list comprises 54 authors and 11 translators recognized for works of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, biography, essay, science writing, translation, and more published in 2021. After shifting to a virtual format in 2021, the 2022 Awards return to New York’s Town Hall on February 28.

The finalists for each award, and the award's corresponding judges, are as follows:

PEN/Jean Stein Book Award ($75,000)
Judges: Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, Angie Cruz, Maurice Manning, Steph Opitz

  • The President and The Frog by Carolina De Robertis (Knopf)
  • The Trees: A Novel by Percival Everett (Graywolf Press)
  • The Kissing Bug: A True Story of a Family, an Insect, and a Nation’s Neglect of a Deadly Disease by Daisy Hernández (Tin House Books)
  • Milk Blood Heat by Dantiel W. Moniz (Grove Press)
  • Harrow by Joy Williams (Knopf)

PEN Open Book Award ($10,000)
Judges: Jaquira Díaz, Rigoberto González, Sequoia Nagamatsu, Khadijah Queen

  • Wake: The Hidden History of Women-Led Slave Revolts by Rebecca Hall (Simon & Schuster)
  • Antiman: A Hybrid Memoir by Rajiv Mohabir (Restless Books)
  • Names for Light: A Family History by Thirii Myo Kyaw Myint (Graywolf Press)
  • Curb by Divya Victor (Nightboat Books)
  • White Magic by Elissa Washuta (Tin House Books)

PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Short Story Collection ($25,000)
Judges: Ling Ma, Manuel Muñoz, Oscar Villalon

  • Skinship: Stories by Yoon Choi (Knopf)
  • Eat the Mouth That Feeds You by Carribean Fragoza (City Lights Books)
  • Milk Blood Heat by Dantiel W. Moniz (Grove Press)
  • Objects of Desire: Stories by Clare Sestanovich (Knopf)
  • Give My Love to the Savages: Stories by Chris Stuck (Amistad Press)

PEN/Hemingway Award for Debut Novel ($10,000)
Judges: Zeyn Joukhadar, Téa Obreht, Daniel Torday

  • Burnt Sugar by Avni Doshi (The Overlook Press)
  • Dear Miss Metropolitan: A Novel by Carolyn Ferrell (Henry Holt & Company)
  • The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois: A Novel by Honorée Fanonne Jeffers (Harper)
  • Detransition, Baby: A Novel by Torrey Peters (One World)
  • The Five Wounds: A Novel by Kirstin Valdez Quade (W.W. Norton & Company)

PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay ($15,000)
Judges: Jason DeParle, Hua Hsu, Marilynne Robinson

  • A Little Devil in America: Notes in Praise of Black Performance by Hanif Abdurraqib (Random House)
  • Homo Irrealis: Essays by André Aciman (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
  • Black Paper: Writing in a Dark Time by Teju Cole (University of Chicago Press)
  • These Precious Days: Essays by Ann Patchett (Harper)
  • Graceland, at Last: Notes on Hope and Heartache from the American South by Margaret Renkl (Milkweed Editions)

PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry Collection ($5,000)
Judges: Lillian-Yvonne Bertram, Lia Purpura, Safiya Sinclair

  • Yellow Rain: Poems by Mai Der Vang (Graywolf Press)
  • Sho by Douglas Kearney (Wave Books)
  • Heard-Hoard by Atsuro Riley (University of Chicago Press)
  • frank: sonnets by Diane Seuss (Graywolf Press)
  • Mutiny by Phillip B. Williams (Penguin Books)

PEN Award for Poetry in Translation ($3,000)
Judges: Caro Carter, Michael Favala Goldman, Parisa Saranj

  • Exhausted on the Cross by Najwan Darwish; translated from the Arabic by Kareem James Abu-Zeid (New York Review Books)
  • Everything I Don't Know by Jerzy Ficowski; translated from the Polish by Jennifer Grotz and Piotr Sommer (World Poetry Books)
  • I Name Him Me: Selected Poems of Ma Yan by Ma Yan; translated from the Chinese by Stephen Nashef (Ugly Duckling Presse)
  • Outgoing Vessel, Ursula Andkjær Olsen; translated from the Danish by Katrine Øgaard Jensen (Action Books)
  • Ova Completa, Susana Thénon; translated from Spanish by Rebekah Smith (Ugly Duckling Presse)

PEN Translation Prize ($3,000)
Judges: Almiro Andrade, Mayada Ibrahim, Barbara Ofosu-Somuah, Sharon E. Rhodes

  • FEM by Magda Cârneci; translated from the Romanian by Sean Cotter (Deep Vellum)
  • New Year by Juli Zeh; translated from the German by Alta L. Price (World Editions)
  • Migratory Birds by Mariana Oliver; translated from the Spanish by Julia Sanches (Transit Books)
  • The Last One: A Novel by Fatima Daas; translated from the French by Lara Vergnaud (Other Press)
  • Kaya Days: A Novel by Carl de Souza; translated from the French by Jeffrey Zuckerman (Two Line Press)

PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award ($10,000)
Judges: Jonathan Safran Foer, Michele Harper, Lauren Redniss

  • The Memory Thief: And the Secrets Behind What We Remember—A Medical Mystery by Lauren Aguirre (Pegasus Books)
  • The Disordered Cosmos: A Journey into Dark Matter, Spacetime, and Dreams Deferred by Chanda Prescod-Weinstein (Bold Type Books)
  • Fox & I: An Uncommon Friendship by Catherine Raven (Spiegel & Grau)
  • Believers: Making a Life at the End of the World by Lisa Wells (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
  • Life's Edge: The Search for What It Means to Be Alive by Carl Zimmer (Dutton Books)

PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography ($5,000)
Judges: Luke Dittrich, Paul Golob, Imani Perry

  • The Invention of Miracles: Language, Power, and Alexander Graham Bell’s Quest to End Deafness by Katie Booth (Simon & Schuster)
  • All the Frequent Troubles of Our Days: The True Story of the American Woman at the Heart of the German Resistance to Hitler by Rebecca Donner(Little Brown and Company)
  • Albert and the Whale: Albrecht Dürer and How Art Imagines Our World by Phillip Hoare (Pegasus Books)
  • The Gambler Wife: A True Story of Love, Risk, and the Woman Who Saved Dostoyevsky by Andrew D. Kaufman (Riverhead Books)
  • Orwell’s Roses by Rebecca Solnit (Viking)

PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award for Nonfiction ($10,000)
Judges: Emma Copley Eisenberg, Dr. K. Tsianina Lomawaima, Chanel Miller, Dagmawi Woubshet

  • Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival & Hope in an American City by Andrea Elliott (Random House)
  • All that She Carried: The Journey of Ashley’s Sack, a Black Family’s Keepsake by Tiya Miles (Random House)
  • Halfway Home: Race, Punishment, and the Afterlife of Mass Incarceration by Reuben Jonathan Miller (Little Brown and Company)
  • Let the Record Show: A Political History of ACT UP New York, 1987-1993 by Sarah Schulman (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
  • How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America by Clint Smith (Little Brown and Company)